YourWords STL


YourWords STL began when two people had the same inspiration around the same time, with just enough serendipity to bring that thought into action. Two high school friends, Dr. Anna Guzon and Dr. Steve Handoyo, like much of St Louis, were disheartened by the events surrounding and following Michael Brown Jr.'s death in 2014.

We are committed to bridging racial, cultural, and economic divides, by honing the ability of people to tell their stories, while providing opportunities for the community to listen.
YourWords STL uses one-on-one tutoring, creative writing workshops, and collaborative writing projects to amplify the voices of St. Louis youth. We believe we can change St. Louis by empowering young people to tell their stories. Part of our mission is to provide a sense of consistency and security for these students by recruiting passionate, committed tutors and volunteers who are dedicated to attending every weekly session.
Bessel van der Kolk. M.D.
Language gives us the power to change ourselves and others by communicating our experiences, helping us to define what we know, and finding a common sense of meaning.
Rebecca Wallace-Segall
Human beings yearn to share, reflect, and understand one another, and they use these reflections to improve the state of things, both personal and public.
Kathryn Feldt
YourWordsSTL gives young people a way to find and use their authentic voices, to process their emotions, and to feel hope and confidence in the future.
Bessel van der Kolk M.D.
Feeling listened to and understood changes our physiology; being able to articulate a complex feeling, and having our feelings recognized, lights up our limbic brain and creates an a-ha moment.
Tutoring hours at Marygrove
Hours at Lift for Life Gym
Programming Partners
Books Created

meet our team.


Our Advisory Board.

Jennifer Rengachary

Sheri Miesner Phegley

Treasure Shields Redmond

Ben Griffiths


Our Funders.

Our Fiscal Sponsor.